Series or Stand Alone, with Cathy Perkins
I have a question for you: are you a series woman or a stand-alone fan?
While I’ve been told I’m not exactly the most discriminating reader, I love both. I fall in love with a book for its characters – and when I love characters, I want to spend time with them. Lots of time. I love watching a character grow and develop. In my favorite series, the author weaves together long-running plot threads and character arcs to produce a truly satisfying conclusion – one that completes the series or trilogy.
A series can have dangers that a stand-alone might not face. As a reader, it’s fine for me to love characters without reservation. But authors have to maintain enough distance to step back and consider the book’s structure, independent of the characters. Otherwise, you can write the same book over and over without a new conflict. The book’s pacing may slow because even well-loved characters need to advance the plot in their scenes. Sometimes it’s time to move on and create a new world or new protagonists.
When it comes to my writing, I’ve had series books – or at least related, spin-offs – on my mind. The Professor, a suspense with romance, released from Carina Press earlier this year, and readers tell me they want more. While I’m not sure I want to create a series for Mick and Meg, there are a few secondary characters interesting enough to make me look at them twice. For the first time, I’m writing a novella featuring one of these characters. I’ll have to visit again when it’s closer to release.
So what about you? Series or stand-alone? Any reasons or favorite series/spin-off?